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Burlington is the New Brooklyn

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I just wanted to take a moment to give props to the people over at Higher Ground for the fantastic lineup of shows they've booked for late March and April.

The big win is Jeff Tweedy of Wilco (pictured) playing a solo acoustic set on March 26. Considering all three Wilco shows I've seen have been at big outdoor amphitheaters with capacities in the thousands (including a show on a beautiful evening at the Shelburne Museum two summers ago), seeing Tweedy in such an intimate setting will be a treat. Better yet, Tweedy is known to play not just songs from the Wilco catalogue at his rare solo gigs, but also tunes by his numerous other bands (Uncle Tupelo, Loose Fur, etc.) plus unreleased songs and covers, so we're certain to get something special. One last bit of icing on the cake: Wilco's fantastically bespectacled keyboardist Mikael Jorgensen is opening the show with his other band, Pronto. No way this won't sell out, so don't procrastinate on getting tickets.

The following week, the Welsh indie pop/punk group Los Campesinos are playing the little room at HG. The week after that gives us two nights of awesome with the brilliant singer/violinist/whistler Andrew Bird playing Sunday night (guess he liked us from the last Higher Ground show he played in 2007), followed the next night by the punk cabaret act World/Inferno Friendship Society. Critically acclaimed singer/songwriter Robyn Hitchcock plays April 14, and finally O.C.-approved singer Alexi Murdoch closes out this great run of shows on April 19.

It's really cool to see such a nice chunk of indie rock shows lumped in with the more common Higher Ground fare of jam bands, rappers, and NPR-friendly acts. Here's hoping that this trend keeps up. And here's my public plea to the Higher Ground people: Bring M. Ward to town. Please.

And who knows--maybe we can turn Burlington's reputation as a haven for smelly hippie jam bands around...

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